Betsy Moore

Column Betsy Moore

Betsy Moore is a health columnist for the Observer-Reporter, a health coach, and author of the BMoore Healthy blog.

Homemade salad dressings are healthy and delicious

  • March 15, 2013

When buying packaged foods, especially salad dressings, read the ingredients and don’t be fooled by what the packaging claims.

Homemade salad dressings are so easy to make and so much better for you. Plus, they taste amazing because they are fresh.

Water: Water is often the first ingredient listed in packaged salad dressings. In “low-fat” or “diet” dressings, you are basically paying for water. Not cool.

Canola oil and/or soybean oil: These oils are cheap. That is why you see them in packaged foods. They are not as flavorful as olive oil, nor do they offer health benefits.

Xanthan gum: This is added as a thickener. Shake or whisk your own dressing vigorously and it will thicken – naturally.

Fat-free: I am not a fan of fat-free dressing. For one thing, you need fat in order to absorb fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin A, found in many veggies. No fat, no absorption of Vitamin A.

Polysorbate 60: This is an emulsifier that keeps the ingredients together. Shaking homemade dressing also keeps the ingredients together.

Potasium sorbate: A preservative. Not natural.

Homemade salad dressings are super easy and so much better for you than packaged ones. My daughter, who is 3, will eat pretty much any vegetable with this dressing on it.

Simple Spinach Salad with Sweet Balsamic Dressing

• Ingredients

Bunch of baby spinach leaves

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon mustard

1 teaspoon maple syrup

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

In a big bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Add the spinach and toss. Enjoy!

Betsy J. Moore is a nutrition and wellness coach. Visit her website, She can be reached at or on Twitter at @BMooreHealthy.


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